If there’s one thing North Americans are united by it’s the love of a good nickname. We can’t get enough of giving our towns, cities and states quirky nicknames and using them as often as possible in conversation and on our license plates. Some of these names are simply amazing, ranging from the imaginative to the inspirational to the very literal, so seeing them mapped out like this is a great way to learn more about them. So keep reading to find out the nicknames of American and Canadian places mapped out.
For example, did you know that Alaska’s nickname is The Last Frontier? It’s no surprise really, given how wild it is even today. There’s definitely a frontier feeling to this state, which is also known as The Great State and The Land of the Midnight Sun (more on that shortly), because of its long summers where many parts of Alaska have 24 hours of sunlight a day.
But what is it about a state that inspires a nickname? For a name to stick, it has to be one that resonates with people who live there and those who go to visit. It can’t be one that is time-specific, so the flavor of the month’s suggestions aren’t going to last, and this is why so many US states have nicknames that reflect their natural wonders.
And why not? If you are Arizona and you have the Grand Canyon, why not call yourself The Grand Canyon State? Meanwhile, Florida could call itself The Mickey Mouse State, but it’s much more appealing to go with The Everglade State, not to be confused with The Evergreen State, which is, of course, Washington’s nickname.
There are even some states that take their inspiration from wildlife that is commonly found or associated with it, like The Beaver State (Oregon), The Pelican State (Louisiana) or The Badger State (Wisconsin). And then, of course, there’s The Hoosier State of Indiana, a nickname that has become incredibly popular without anyone really knowing for sure what it means or where it came from.
North of the border in Canada we find… The Land of the Midnight Sun. That’s the nickname of the Yukon, for exactly the same reason it’s one of the nicknames for Alaska. The Arctic Circle theme continues next door in the Northwest Territories, which is known as The Land of the Polar Bear. There are some lovely nicknames in Canada, from La Belle Province to The Heartland Province to The Wild Rose Province.
Saskatchewan’s nickname is the equally delightful The Land of Living Skies, because of the beautiful colorful skies you can see there, while New Brunswick’s The Picture Province tells you all you need to know about how they feel about its beauty. However, the simplest and most appropriate nickname in North America has to be that of its largest and most northerly territory, Nunavut.
It’s an area of great natural beauty and wonders with a large Inuit population. And the nickname its people have given it sums up their pride and loyalty to where they come from because they call it…Our Land. So, which of these nicknames is your favorite, and have any of them inspired to go and visit those places?